|Written by Mairi Cowan, University College Writing Centre|
The plural form of most nouns is formed by adding s to the end of the word.
When a word ends in sh, ch, s, z, or x, the plural is usually formed by adding es to the end.
When a word ends in [consonant] + y, the plural is formed by changing the y to ie and adding s.
In compound nouns, the principal word is the one made plural.
Many nouns referring to animals have the same form in the singular and in the plural.
If a noun ends in f or fe the plural is usually formed by adding s, but is sometimes formed by changing the f or fe to a ve and adding s.
If a noun ends in o, the plural is usually formed by adding s, but is sometimes formed by adding es.
Words borrowed into English from other languages sometimes follow the rules for pluralisation in English and sometimes those for pluralisation in the original language.
Plurals of symbols, numbers (including years), and uppercase letters are usually formed by adding s.
Plurals of lowercase letters are usually formed by adding ’s after the letter.
For most proper names, the plural is formed simply by adding s to the end of the name, though when a proper name ends in s the plural is formed by adding es.
Collective nouns (referring to groups of people, animals, or things) are usually treated as singular. If, however, you want to lay stress on the individual members rather than on the overall unit, you may treat the noun as plural: